Wednesday, March 13, 2019

The Moral Failure called Anti-Semitism

Anti-Semitism, it has often been indulged by people who have failed. When you fail, you need to blame someone. If you lack the moral fortitude to blame yourself, you might very well be led to blame Jews. Scapegoating never really goes out of style.

 I have discussed this in a recent post. Today, I offer Michael Ledeen’s sage remarks on the subject, remarks that add a little muscle to the skeleton version I offered.

Ledeen writes:

Yes, the radical Islamists and their allies, the radical Leftists, hate Jews and Americans. Bernard Lewis wrote a masterpiece about it entitled What Went Wrong?, explaining that the Middle Eastern Islamic world constitutes one vast area of failure. Unwilling or incapable of taking the blame for this epic failure, they blamed it on the West -- above all, on the United States and the Jews. Ironically, they imported these doctrines from the West they hate.

As Martin Kramer says, if there had been Nobel prizes a thousand years ago, almost all of them would have gone to Muslims. Today you can count them on the fingers of one mutilated hand, and those were invariably trained at Oxford or Cal Tech. Most Nobel laureates, above all in the hard sciences, are Americans (or trained or worked in America), and a spectacular percentage of those are Jewish. As of 2017, 22.5 percent of Nobel winners were Jews, out of a global population of 0.2 percent. The anti-Semites hate that, taking it as evidence of the power of the Jewish conspiracy.

By this rendering, Muslims decided a thousand years ago, to change their culture, to withdraw from the free trade in ideas and to hunker down. It was a losing bet:

Between the late Ninth Century to the beginning of the 20th Century -- a thousand years -- fewer books were translated from foreign languages to Arabic than were translated into Spanish in Spain alone. No wonder they are so prone to crazy theories about us.

Moreover, their countries are for the most part despotic failures, while Israel and the United States are bursting with freedom, energy and creativity (and good food). The Muslims know this, and of late some of their leaders have finally begun to work with Israel, and increased cooperation with America. They know that they have invariably been defeated by Israel and America in every armed conflict, whether in the Six-Day War, the Yom Kippur War, the fight against ISIS, the war in Iraq, or on the Afghanistan battlefield.

As noted here too, some modern Muslim leaders are now enhancing their diplomatic ties with Israel. They want to enter the modern world and to command respect for their what they build, not for what they destroy. Naturally, the pro-Palestinian wing of the Democratic Party is appalled. They have refused to believe that they bear any responsibility for their own failures and for the failures of the people they represent. Might we not say that people have failed because they have been following the cultural imperatives laid down by the leftist elites?

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